Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Travelling the World.

Oh how sophisticated we think we are these days, hauling our designer luggage through customs, boarding elegant planes and flying off to exotic places. What would our ancestors of thought of it all - when you think that two hundred years ago cars had not even been thought of, let alone planes.

But, when you really think about it, how very far we lag behind other things on our planet. I was reminded of this today in the Times when Paul Simons told us that the dust and dirt which has been arriving to make our windows and our cars filthy over the past couple of weeks is dust from a dust storm in the Sahara desert.

The birds trek around the world all the time as a matter of course. We now have two swallows, already building a nest in the barn, having made their way here from Africa. And they haven't just made their way to the UK, but to the barn where they were born last year or the year before. And already the Osprey are building a nest at Loch Garten in Scotland - a nest site they used last year and the year before having trekked half way round the world to get here.

How cleverly things find ways to move about. I read a couple of weeks ago about a plant which grew only in the South of England but which now, thanks to motorway traffic close to one of the sites where it flourishes, has moved thirty miles or so up the country and is expected to do the same next year by seedlings hitching a lift.

On Middleham Castle, the castle of King Richard III , near to where we live, the ruined walls are covered in Summer with the tiny bright pink flowers of Erinus Alpinus - and that was reputedly brought here from Italy on the boots of the Roman soldiers.

The Saharan dust from my windows has now gone, as Andrew, the window cleaner, has just been. I suppose the dust will be in his water bucket and he will throw that water into the beck when it is too dirty to use - and the dust will float downstream - all very mind-boggling I find.

Lovely day here - bitterly cold wind though.


Mimi Foxmorton said...

This is really a lovely blog.
I look forward to following.

Have a happy Spring day!


Hildred said...

Oh yes, we are an arrogant species, Weaver. We need to live the simple life, full of awe!

Heather said...

It's much cooler here too Pat. A very interesting and thought provoking post. I often think we aren't nearly as clever as we think we are.

Pondside said...

Just think - British ducks with Saharan dusk in their water.
I'm in Kingston (yes, the one that you like!) after a less-than-glamorous trip - shoes off, shoes on, xrayed, patted down and carry-on emptied for the world to see all. But I'm here, and that's the main thing, with west coast dust on my shoes.

steven said...

weaver the big and little loops of our daily experiencing are truly mind expanding and remind us of the connectedness of all things. steven

H said...

I drove my elder son back to Uni in Cumbria last week. En route, I was talking to him about how hard I can find it to adjust to a new place when I can travel there so quickly. I can be in Derby at 7 and Cumbria by 10. It all seems too fast. I think we were hardwired to toil our way cross country with a packhorse and two legs. Does that sound really odd?

John Going Gently said...

my welsh terrier came to wales from nottingham.... in a car!

Jo said...

Weaver, you've expressed exactly why it's so important not to trivialize what is happening today around the globe. What happens in the Sahara affects us in the Midwest, and what happens in the North pole affects the islands in the South Pacific.

We are all connected, and would do well to take note of just how mind boggling it all is. thank you!

Cloudia said...

ah, you have a grand mind;
it's my pleasure to ride along!

Warm Aloha from Waikiki

Comfort Spiral




The Weaver of Grass said...

Thank you for the comments. Of course I forgot to mention that the poison from Japan is also travelling the world so it is not all good news.

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

It is a very small world. The animals know it. Only the people have yet to be convinced.